Social Media Top 5: Instagram Disappears, Snapchat Offends, FTC Enforces, Twitter Censors, Facebook Spoils

Image Credit: DukeNewport Photography on Flickr

Image Credit: DukeNewport Photography on Flickr

Instagram Stories – I’m Trying to Care – I’m Trying really, really, hard.

This has already been batted around a bit, but Instagram has launched a “stories” feature ripped directly, more or less, from the Snapchat playbook. Good thing? Instagram itself is the more established players- plus it has Facebook’s backing, so there is no reason to believe it cannot succeed on those grounds. Also, Instagram has always amazed me in how instantly communities rise up around simple pieces of content (one could say the same about Snapchat, even if the perceived younger demographic may or may not be an obstacle).

Does Instagram care about marketers and brands more than Snapchat, as I have seen asked somewhere? I don’t believe that; but they are more experienced with them, another reason I think they could make this work.

What I am trying to figure out – and this is my fundamental problem with this feature, and has mystified me about Snapchat to begin with – is why having these stories disappear after 24 hours is appealing to marketers. There may be reasons to do this, but I would want flexibility to choose on/off, and length of time before something disappears. I also believe the best content is persistent and widely shared. Why make it disappear at all? Somebody please explain this to me, for I am stupid.

Snapchat’s Response

Not to be outdone by its more established competitor, Snapchat responded by launching a compelling feature of its own…yet another racist lens!

I try not to judge a company by the personalities of its executives, but the frat boy history of the company’s CEO appears to be a factor (likely one of several) in fostering an insensitive bro culture that doesn’t see anything wrong in celebrating Asian (or Jamaican) caricatures. Can we ignore this? Does it hold the company back behind the scenes in any way (or should it)?

Endorsement Enforcement

The FTC says it will crack down more on online endorsements that aren’t clearly endorsed. It has been a long, slow, path to endorsement enforcement, but every time I see this surface, I’m happy to make it an item in my own posts. It’s worth repeating, over and over: Disclosure!


The article makes a good point about many (most?) influencers wanting to do the right thing, but lacking the guidance. Brands and the FTC need to be clear- that was always true, though if the FTC is threatening enforcement they should double down on education efforts, if the goal is to get everyone to do the right thing rather than simply to punish.

Note: I found the ad industry executive quoted in the article to be a disingenuous twit.

“I don’t know if I even think of it as an ad”


Worse: if this article speaks the truth – that 25% of the time, brands ask endorsers not to disclose, then we have a ways to go.

Twitter- Censorship or Community Management?

Reportedly, Twitter CEO Dick Costolo had abusive comments towards President Obama filtered out during an online chat event. This Buzzfeed article refers to it as “censorship,” but I have a problem having a problem with this. Twitter can do what it wants, but more importantly it has been under fire for not doing enough to curb online abuse, particularly towards women, on their platform. The problem I have is that Twitter doesn’t do this more widely.

It’s not censorship, it’s community management, and the only one who should be frightened of a wider implementation might be Donald Trump, who would be at risk for a permanent ban from Twitter (SMILEY FACE EMOJI!)

Stop Acting So Spoiled

I was actually going to waste this last bit on a plea to stop advocating unnecessary use of Oxford commas (though seriously, this author invalidates his argument for the comma by citing the tussle over the pronunciation of “gif” in his argument- damn, I went and posted about it anyway), but I’ll instead mention a current pet peeve: people whining about being spoiled with the results of live sporting events on Facebook. This has been especially prevalent during the Olympics. Not being spoiled does not work for sports- not since the transatlantic cables were laid. WHY ARE YOU ON FACEBOOK if you don’t want to know? Go away, and live in your tape-delayed bubble, clutching your plush Bob Costas doll (I bet those exist).


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